Love of nature inspires writer
Weyauwega native publishes first book
By Jane Myhra
Jo Arney, a native of Weyauwega, recently published her first book, “Wilderness and the Common Good – A New Ethic of Citizenship.”
“As a child I got to spend a lot of time outside playing in the areas surrounding my parents’ and grandparents’ residences,” Arney said. “I think that this fostered a curiosity and love for wild spaces that resulted in a general curiosity about the environment and a drive to want to protect it.”
Each chapter looks at different arguments surrounding the environment and protecting America’s wilderness areas.
Arney incorporates personal stories and her knowledge of philosophy and political science to demonstrate why the wilderness and its protection is important
The daughter of Fred and Charlene Kuenzi, of Weyauwega, Arney is a 1994 graduate of Weyauwega-Fremont High School.
She earned an undergraduate degree in philosophy from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point in 1998, a master’s degree in philosophy from Colorado State University-Fort Collins in 2001 and a doctorate degree in public administration from the University of Colorado-Denver in 2007.
Arney is currently an associate professor at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.
She and her husband Jeremy live on an old tobacco farm in Coon Valley with two dogs and two cats.
Since the Arneys moved to the five-acre farm in 2011, they have worked to clear brush and reclaim the old structures, including a barn and a silo.
She says living on a farm has given her a greater respect for nature.
“When you value wildness, you can learn to value wilderness and want to protect it,” she said.
She was encouraged to write the book by a publisher, Sam Scinta, whom she met in La Crosse.
Arney’s book may be ordered from Barnes and Noble, Amazon or directly from Fulcrum Publishing.